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14 Foods That Boost Your Mood

Many foods have the ability to improve your mood. If you have a fairly good diet, you can simply look in your kitchen and find plenty of mood-boosting foods that are both healthy

and delicious. When you are dealing with any mood changes, whether it is more irritability, anger, or just mood swings, it is a good idea to take a look at your health and lifestyle first. While

it might be related to a medical condition that your doctor can help treat, consider what

your current lifestyle is like.

Are you drinking alcohol or caffeine more than normal? Do you get enough exercise?

How is your stress level? I will talk more about the effects of stress on your mood and hormones level later in the year.

Another important aspect of your mood and mental health can be found in the foods you eat. There are quite a few healthy and delicious foods that are not only food for your body, but can help boost your mood as well.

Here are the top 14 foods that are going to give you a nice mood boost.

1. Dark Leafy Greens

The first type of food that can be amazing for your mood is dark, leafy greens. Greens

have a variety of nutrients. These include fiber, which balances your blood sugar, B

vitamins for brain health, as well as iron.

Studies show that iron deficiency is closely linked to anxiety and disrupted

neurotransmitters as well, which provides even more reason to eat these nutritious


Iron also helps to produce energy, which can lead to positive feelings. While it can be

great for boosting your mood, you also want to be sure not to have too much iron. Talk

to your doctor to discuss the right amount.

2. Salmon

Salmon acts as a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are exceptional for helping

to boost your mood. Omega-3 fatty acids act as crucial elements in the development of

your nervous system and brain. In geographical areas where the residents eat more

fatty fish, they become less likely to get anxious or depressed, so it makes sense that it

would be good for your mood!

There are also high amounts of protein as well as vitamins B12 and D in omega-3 fatty

foods like salmon. If you haven’t had much salmon before, try adding it into your diet


It is as simple as adding a little bit of salmon on your salad with lots of veggies (and leafy

greens!). You can also make a small serving of blackened salmon with brown rice and steamed

veggies. These provide simple, healthy ways to incorporate salmon into your diet.

3. Turkey

Full of tryptophan, turkey produces a neurotransmitter called serotonin. When you have

lower levels of tryptophan in your body, that can lead to less serotonin development as

well as an increase in depression and anxiety. Turkey also has tyrosine, an amino acid

that is related to neurotransmitters.

Turkey is a healthy, low-fat protein option, so it is great for most people’s diets. Whether

you are on a general healthy diet, low-carb or low-fat diet, it is going to work great for

you. Start adding turkey to your salads, have roasted turkey for dinner, or use

ground turkey in place of ground beef in different recipes.

Some other mood-boosting elements of turkey include vitamins B6 and B12, as well as

zinc. Zinc deficiencies often lead to increased occurrences of depression and anxiety.

4. Chia Seeds

Chia seeds act as another rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as nutrients such

as iron, calcium, fiber, and protein. Chia also contains magnesium, which increases

feelings of well-being.

There are so many benefits to chia seeds, that they will not only help aid in boosting

your mood along with these other nutritious foods, but they provide overall health and

wellness for your body and mind.

The easiest way to incorporate more chai seeds into your diet is by adding them to your

smoothie or protein shake.

5. Eggs

Eggs were previously thought to be a slightly unhealthy options because of the higher

fat content, but many studies have shown that they don’t have the effect on your

cholesterol than was once predicted. Of course, if your doctor advises against them,

they might still be something to pass up.

However, if you like eggs, definitely add them to your diet to help boost your mood.

They are high in vitamins B12 and D, as well as protein. Eggs have choline, which helps

with your nervous system, mood, and makes neurotransmitters and selenium, an

antioxidant. When you eat antioxidant-rich foods, it helps with your brain health and

boosts your mood.

6. Lentils

Next up is lentil, which supply folate, a vitamin that helps your nervous system develop.

Those who are deficient in folate experience higher rates of depression. They also

contain fiber, which helps with blood sugar, protein, vitamin B6, and iron. Vitamin B6

makes neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin.

If you are not accustomed to eating lentils, just start small by adding some to salads or

having soup with lentils in them.

7. Avocados

The good thing about avocados is that not only do they help boost your mood, but they

are delicious! Many people love eating avocados, but had no idea they could actually be

good for you.Avocados are higher in fat, but it is the healthy type of fat. They contain

fiber and vitamins B6, E and C. Another valuable vitamin you can get from avocados is

B5, which helps your neurotransmitters develop.

8. Fermented Foods

In the past few years, research has shown a definite link between your brain and gut.

Over 90 percent of serotonin gets produced in your digestive system. So, to get your

moods back on track, you will need to prioritize your gut health.

These days, researchers have looked at the link between mood and gut bacteria. Some

meta-analyses even say that probiotics can help with depression.

Whether your fermented food item of choice is sauerkraut, kombucha, or even dairy-

free yogurt, all of these foods are excellent sources of probiotics.

9. Dark Chocolate

There is a reason you tend to feel better and happier after eating chocolate, and it is not

just from the sugar. Chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, is amazing for health and

wellness. It contains compounds such as phenylethylamine (for endorphins) and

anandamide, which researchers call the "bliss" chemical. Not only is chocolate a good

source of antioxidants, but it can also improve cognition and mood.

For a healthier option, try to go for the darkest chocolate you are able to enjoy, looking

for lower amounts of sugar in the chocolate.

10. Ghee

If you don’t like butter or can’t eat it due to a dairy allergy, you’re in luck! You can

instead use ghee, which is made from butter, but doesn’t have the same effect on your

body. It also happens to be another great food for improving your mood.

Also known as clarified butter, ghee has a lot of nutritious fats as well as vitamin D. It

also helps to heal the digestive tract, which allows your gut bacteria to develop.

11. Sunflower Seeds

A great source of vitamins B6, E, and magnesium, sunflower seeds are a good mood

booster for those with allergies to nuts. You can easily switch any type of nut called for

in a recipe for sunflower seeds.

Try adding sunflower seeds to your salads, or just having a handful of the seeds as a

snack with a piece of fruit or cheese.

12. Almonds

Almonds act as an amazing source of protein, vitamin E, fiber, and magnesium. Vitamin

E acts as an antioxidant, which helps fight damage caused by free radicals. This food

item also improves your cognition and memory.

Not only can they help improve your mood and your overall health, but they are really

easy to add to your diet. There are so many ways to incorporate more almonds into

your diet, from dipping apple slices in almond butter, to switching to almond flour in your

baked goods when you want a healthier option.

13. Bell Peppers

Before finishing off this list, we can’t forget about bell peppers. All colors of bell peppers

are great for you, low in fat, low in carbohydrates, and have lots of vitamins and


Bell peppers have the antioxidant vitamin C, which helps the functioning of your nervous

system and the improvement of your cognition. Studies show that vitamin C reduces

your stress and helps with mood.

14. Sardines

Last, but not least, are sardines. These are an acquired taste and not mandatory, but a

good option if you enjoy the salty fish. Sardines come with a bunch of mood-boosting

elements. In addition to high levels of vitamin B12, sardines have choline, vitamin D,

protein, selenium, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Boosting your mood with food is one of the easiest ways to improve your well-being

over time. You can see results even if you don't overhaul your diet right away. Just

making one or two changes to your diet to include more mood-friendly foods can be just

the thing to change your life for the better.

Whether that change involves getting acquainted with kombucha or keeping a dark

chocolate bar in your drawer "in case of emergency", making tweaks to your diet now

can pay dividends in the future.


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